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January 15, 2013 LinkedInTwitterFacebook
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  • Hotel Reservations for the 2013 Conference: Join us in New Orleans for NCHN's 19th Annual Conference (April 16-19). Reservations have opened at the discounted conference rate and a limited number of double-double bed rooms are available on a first come, first served basis.


January Coffee/Tea Chat with Dr. Chess

Welcome to 2013!  The beginning of a new year always seems to bring new perspectives. When we meet on Wednesday, January 16th for the first Coffee/Tea Chat of 2013 with Dr. Chess, you'll be invited to share your perspectives:  how are you communicating the accomplishments of your network; how are you crowd sourcing for ideas; what is your process for on-boarding new and returning board members for the year; or, how do you keep your web presence current.  

There are probably many new perspectives to consider for our conversation, so you are invited to join us on:
Wednesday, January 16th
Time: 10:30 AM ET; 9:30 AM CT; 8:30 AM MT; 7:30 AM PT; 6:30 AM AKST

Call in details were distributed through a Save the Date Notice. If you need details, contact Rebecca.

January Coffee/Tea Chat
Wednesday, Jan. 16 @ 10:30 AM ET

Business Partners Committee Call
Wednesday, Jan. 16 @ 1:30 PM ET

Special Topics: Call with Heman Marshall on Anti-Trust Laws and Issues Relevant to Health Networks
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:30 PM ET

NCHN Board of Directors Call
Monday, Jan. 21 @ 2:00 PM ET

2013 Conference Planning Committee Call
Tuesday, Jan. 22 @ 2:00 PM ET



Heman MarshallNCHN Member Special Topics Call:
The Impact of Federal Antitrust Laws on Network Operations
AKA "But officer, I didn't really mean to conspire!"

with Heman A. Marshall, III, Woods Rogers PLC

Rescheduled: Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:30 PM ET

The Sherman Act, the Clayton Act, and other federal Antitrust Laws generally prohibit business conduct that restricts or harms competition.  While this is laudable, as with all things, the “Devil’s in the details”.  Seemingly benign conduct can sometimes inadvertently cross the line from “legal” to “illegal”.  This is particularly true when otherwise separate organizations that currently or potentially compete undertake joint activity.  Of course, the typical healthcare network is just such an arrangement.  Therefore, both networks and members need to be aware of the antitrust “Do’s” and “Don’t’s” to avoid crossing the line.

In addition, we are in a period when mergers, consolidations, affiliations and similar steps to integrate previously separate healthcare organizations are on the rise.  Recent legislative and financial pressures have only increased this movement.  A side effect of this trend has been increased federal antitrust enforcement.  Combining any two previously independent competitors in any market increases the market power of the combined entity, and can have potentially anticompetitive effects, and thus trigger antitrust challenges.

In short, healthcare networks and their members can unwittingly find themselves “targets” of antitrust enforcement.  The best protection is knowledge of the laws and the specific conduct that needs to be avoided.  The purpose of this discussion is to arm you with an overview of the laws and knowledge of the “risky” conduct so that if your organization encounters a situation that raises antitrust risk, you can take steps to avoid mistakes and seek specific guidance.

Call-in details will be sent out by email this week.
If you have questions, contact Rebecca.

2013 Conference Keynote Speaker Fundraising Program
In December, Chris Hopkins, Chair of the 2013 Conference Planning Committee, sent an email annoucning the 2013 Annual Conference Keynote Speaker Program. This Program will be used to help NCHN in reaching a new level of potential speakers for the Conference.

Special thanks to the following networks for their commitment of $200 each:

For more information about the program, contact Christy at



NRHA 2013 Rural Health Awards: Nominate you favorite rural health professionals (Deadline: Feb. 14, 2013)

NBC Political Director Says Rural/Urban Divide “Stark” (Jan. 14, 2013, NRHA Blog)

Rotarians and VCOM students to join for marrow registry drive April 13 (Jan. 7, 2013,

NOSORH's January 2013 issue of The Branch is online (pdf).


3 Big Rural, Community Healthcare Challenges (Jan. 9, 2013, HealthLeaders Media)
Clearly the biggest issue facing all healthcare providers, both rural and urban, this year 2013 and into the next decade or longer is the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Big Changes in Rural/Exurban Poverty Rates (Jan. 11, 2013, Daily Yonder)
In rural America, few places are average. Here are the counties that had the largest increases and decreases in poverty rates from 2007 to 2011.

Priorities, leadership can lead rural, community hospitals to meaningful use (Jan. 9, 2013,
The strategic use of resources, both internal and external, will determine whether rural and community hospitals achieve meaningful use, according to a new issue brief published by Stoltenberg Consulting. While finances present a major obstacle for these healthcare organizations looking to implement health IT systems, they are not the only resource lacking within this hospitals that could have a significant effect on whether they will receive payments through the EHR Incentive Programs.

Invaluable rural health policy analysis (Jan. 9, 2013, IowaNow)
The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust has provided the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) Health Panel with a three-year, $600,000 award to continue its work providing science-based, objective policy analysis to federal and state health policy makers in the area of rural health.

3 Ways Telemedicine Can Help Alleviate the Physician Shortage (Jan. 8, 2013, Becker's Hospital Review)
The entire healthcare community seems to be on edge about the national physician shortage. An article in the Annals of Family Medicine predicted that the nation will be short 52,000 physicians by 2025, and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will give roughly 30 million Americans health insurance for the first time, further exacerbating the problem.

Profile of Rural Health Clinics: Medicare Payments & Common Diagnoses (Jan. 9,2013, MHA's Center for Rural Health)
With over 3,900 certified sites located across the country, Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) are an important component of the rural health care infrastructure. This Findings Brief presents a summary profile of Medicare billing and reimbursement activity for independent and provider-based RHCs, using data extracted from 2009 Medicare outpatient provider claims.

120 Years After It Was Declared Dead, the American Frontier Is Expanding (Jan. 9, 2013, National Journal)
The Health and Human Services Department wants to classify more counties as beyond boundary, provoking criticism from some senators.

SCRHRC Releases Rural Border Health Chartbook (Jan. 11, 2013, SC Rural Health Research Center)
The chartbook adds to existing knowledge regarding conditions in the border region by examining potential geographic and ethnic disparities among U.S. border residents.
Link to full report (pdf)

AHA asks CMS to speed EHR program fix for CAHs (Jan. 10, 2013, MHA's Center for Rural Health)
Rural America At A Glance, 2012 Edition highlights the most recent indicators of social and economic conditions in rural areas for use in developing policies and programs to assist rural areas. This year's edition focuses on the U.S. rural economy, including employment trends, poverty, and population trends.

CMS releases Meaningful Use tipsheet for specialty providers (Jan. 11, 2013,
CMS has released a tipsheet for specialty providers in order to help specialists navigate the intricacies of the EHR Incentive program.

FCC gives telehealth $400M boost (Jan. 10, 2013, HealthcareIT news)
The Federal Communications Commission will make $400 million available annually to healthcare providers to expand the development of broadband telehealth networks from a pilot to a permanent program. The pilot program has supported 50 provider healthcare networks in 38 states.

Millions of Americans newly eligible for quality, affordable health coverage in 2014 (Jan. 14, 2013, HHS News Release)
Because of the Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans will be newly eligible to receive quality, affordable health care through Medicaid and the new health insurance marketplaces (also known as the Exchanges) in 2014. Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today released a proposed rule that promotes consistent policies and processes for eligibility notices and appeals in Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and Exchanges and give states more flexibility when operating their Medicaid programs.

Hoping for a recovery (Jan. 5, 2013, ModernHealthcare)
While public hospitals can expect another challenging year operationally, Dr. Bruce Siegel, president and CEO of the National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems, says there might be some good news ahead.

More Doctors, Hospitals Partner to Coordinate Care for People with Medicare (Jan. 11, 2013,
Providers Form 106 New Accountable Care Organizations


National Provider Call: Meaningful Use - Stage 1 and 2 (Jan. 16, 2013 | 2:00 - 3:30 PM EST, CMS)

HIE Governance Town Halls (Jan. 17, 2013 @ 12:00 PM EST and Feb. 14, 2013 @ 3:00 PM, National eHealth Collaborative)

HIT & Quality Webinar: Upgrading and Optimizing an Electronic Health Record System for Safety Net Providers (Jan. 18, 2013 @ 2:00 PM ET, HRSA)

9th Annual 340B Coalition Winter Conference (Jan. 23 - 25, 2013, San Francisco, CA, The 340B Coalition)

Introduction to the Obesity Prevention Evidence-Based Toolkit (Jan. 29, 2013 | 3:00 - 4:00 PM EST, NOSORH)

Rural Health Policy Institute (Feb. 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C., NRHA)

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